Monday, June 23, 2008

Just make us be brave

George Carlin -- hell-raiser, comedian and self-described 'old fuck' -- has died.

I learned this via Kris, who has some choice words on the matter.

I am tempted to make some kind of inappropriately sentimental comment, not least since I was floored this morning by finding out that a dear friend and much admired scholar is in the midst of a fight against cancer. I'm still reeling a bit from this, and not sure what to say about it.

So it's a bit of a relief to hear someone say some very rude things about people who say sentimental things about death, like, 'If there's anything I can do, don't hesitate to ask.'

George Carlin, from 'It's Bad For Ya', 2008

There's a nice comment in the New York Times obituary:

Still, when pushed to explain the pessimism and overt spleen that had crept into his act, he quickly reaffirmed the zeal that inspired his lists of complaints and grievances. “I don’t have pet peeves,” he said, correcting the interviewer. And with a mischievous glint in his eyes, he added, “I have major, psychotic hatreds.”

And that, George, is one of the reasons we (well, some of us, I won't speak for you all) loved you.

As some of you know, related issues (mainly death, but also, actually, Carlin) have been much on my mind in recent times.

And I'm more of an overt sentimentalist than he was.

'Don't Let Us Get Sick', by Warren Zevon, sung by Jill Sobule

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